Central Texas Pre-Spring 2009 Top 25: 10-6

The top ten in this early look at the top prospects in the Central Texas Class of 2009 features five players who made big impacts on the field in their junior seasons.

The top ten is heavy on Austin area talent showing why 2009 is one of the deepest classes in years in the capital city. Three of the five prospects in the bottom half of the top ten hail from the greater Austin area and all three are players that can be big time players in the college game.

Two more offensive linemen join the countdown in this portion along with a linebacker, a cornerback, and a defensive end.

10. Alex Okafor, DL, Pflugerville
Okafor really blossomed as a junior earning all-district and all-area honors while being a force for the state finalist Panthers. The thing that really jumps out is how well he seems to understand the game and how well he reads keys and executes assignments. He looks just good stringing out the option as he does pinning his ears back and getting after the passer. He has tremendous physical gifts and played better as the season went along.

9. Kerry Hyder, LB, Austin LBJ
A tremendous talent who had to bounce back after a leg injury shortened his sophomore season, Hyder was an all-District player for a Jaguars team that advanced to the state quarterfinals. Once he fills out his 6-foot-3 inch frame, he should be fine college linebacker because right now he has the straight-line speed, hips, and instincts of a safety. He is still very raw and he has a very high cleaning with his natural gifts.

8. Paden Kelley, OL, Lake Travis
Why was Lake Travis' offense one of the state's most productive? Kelley was a big reason as he was the bell cow of the Cavaliers offensive line. For some time scouts have been enamoured with Kelley's physical gifts, such as his quickness and footwork, but with a 15-1 season and a state title under his belt, he now has tangible on-field performance to back up his workouts.

7. Kenny Vaccaro, DB, Brownwood
Like several of the players on the list, Vaccarro is an outstanding two way player, but defense is where he will likely play in college. He plays safety for the Lions and is a very good one having been named 16-4A co-Newcomer of the Year as a sophomore and a first team all-league pick this past season. But as good a safety as he is, Vaccarro looks better suited to play cornerback because he is very fluid in his hips and has outstanding closing speed.

6. Rhontae Scales, OL, Killeen
Just one slot out of making the early top five, Scales is now the third in a line of Roo offensive linemen that will play Division I football, joining Jonathan Rush and David Grant. Scales might be better than both because he combines Rush's quickness and ability to sink his hips with Grant's raw strength.


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